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Creativity, imagination and innovative thinking should be at the ...
Creativity, imagination and innovative thinking should be at the

heart of children's experience at school, the government said today.

In a joint announcement from education secretary Charles Clarke and

culture secretary Tessa Jowell, the education and cultural sectors

were urged to work together to help enrich school life for pupils

across the country.

And they unveiled a £70m plan to extend the successful

Creative Partnerships scheme to a further 20 areas around the


Mr Clarke said:

'Creativity isn't an add on. It must form a vital and integral part

of every child's experience of school. Research has shown that, if it

does, it can contribute to improved learning and increased standards

across the school as a whole.'

Ms Jowell said:

'We have an enormously rich cultural life in this country, and school

must be a window to this world. Our cultural organisations have a

responsibility to work with schools to place young people and

education at the heart of everything they do.'

To underline their commitment to creativity, the two Secretaries of

State announced a £70m plan for Arts Council England to develop 20

new Creative Partnerships, the government's flagship programme

linking schools and the cultural sector, over the next two years.

Ms Jowell added:

'The government wants to see young people from all backgrounds have

the chance to use their creativity and imagination in a positive way.

Creative partnerships are the means by which we will make this

happen. Today's commitment - to extend the initiative further - means

that it will be operating in the majority of the neighbourhood

renewal areas by 2006.'

Arts Council chairman Gerry Robinson said:

'Creative partnerships is a hugely important part of Arts Council

England's commitment to creativity and learning in schools.

'Twice as many young people and teachers will have the opportunity to

work with excellent cultural and creative organisations. We are

delighted to be able to double the size of the project and look

forward to creative partnerships benefiting every region in the



More details of the Creative Partnerships initiative, including a

list of those areas already covered by it in Phase 1 can be found on

the Creative Partnerships website at

and on the DCMS website at

The new Creative Partnership Areas announced today will be introduced

in two phases:

- Phase 2 beginning in December 2003, with activity in schools in

September 2004

Basildon, Derby City, Haringey, Waltham Forest, Enfield, North/South

Tyneside, Cumbria, Southampton and the Isle of Wight, Plymouth and

Coventry and Bradford

- Phase 3 beginning in April 2004, with activity in schools from

September 2005

Thurrock, Tendring, Leicester City, Ex-Coalfields Areas (Bolsover,

Mansfield and Ashfield), North and SE Northumberland, East

Lancashire, Hastings and East Sussex, Stokeon Trent, and Sheffield

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